Track teams place second at NEC Championships

Marblehead’s Elian Colon approaches a hurdle during a race. Photo by Libby O'Neill

The boys and girls track and field teams had strong showings at the Northeastern Conference Championships held on Saturday at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston. Below is an event-by-event breakdown of how individuals performed.

Girls 55m hurdles

Devin Whalen continued her impressive season in the 55mh with a time of 9.24 and a second place finish behind one of the best hurdlers this conference has ever seen. Claire Davis PR’d in both the trials (9.37) and finals (9.35) to finish fourth overall. Elise Burchfield finished seventh overall with a time of 9.89, and positions herself as the top seed going into the next indoor season.

Boys 55m hurdles

Alex Hersey finished second overall with a time of 8.58, and Errol Apostolopoulos finished fourth with a time of 8.61. Alex had a tough start in the final, and yet, still finished second with an 8.58. Errol fell out of the blocks in the prelim and, with a gargantuan effort, scrambled back to run a PR (8.84) and break into the finals for another PR (8.61) and a fourth place finish . Marc Grazado narrowly missed the finals with a ninth place finish and a time of 9.65.

Girls 55m

Cate Trautman led the way with a new school record of 7.62 in the prelims, followed by a 7.63 in the finals to finish third. Ava Machado stumbled out of the blocks in the prelims (7.74) but secured a spot in the finals where she set the number two 55m time in school history, 7.63, to finish fourth. Sadie Halpern put together an incredible prelim to run a 7.73 (.11 PR), placing her fifth on the all-time list as a freshman.

Boys 55m

Thomas Carlson had quite the day, finishing with a .14 PR in the dash to finish fourth overall with a time of 6.85 that is the number six 55m time in the school’s history. Tommy has been in the weight room lifting with the team since July. Harrison Curtis finished sixth overall with a new PR of 6.92. Jacob Bobowksi finished 21st with a time of 7.30, and Matt Mahan finished 24th with a time of 7.35.

Girls 1-Mile 

Maren Potter (6:00.75 – 4 second PR) finished eighth, had the best race of her career, and still knew she could go faster. Maren was averaging low seven minutes for the mile last indoor season, so to see her on the precipice of breaking six minutes is a testament to her hard work in training. Abbie Goodwin (7:17.35 – 11 second PR) also had her best race of the year, finishing 13th overall.

Boys 1-Mile

The three Marblehead milers of Will Cruikshank, Nate Assa, and Ryan Blestowe breaking five minutes was a question of when, not if, and that question was answered Saturday. Will Cruikshank (4:55.38 – 5 second PR) was the first Marblehead runner across the line and 10th overall. Nate Assa
(4:57.32 – 3 second PR) came in right behind him in 11th. Ryan Blestowe (4:58.54 – 4 second PR) managed to reach the milestone while running by himself at the front of his heat, and finished 12th in the overall standings.

Girls 600m 

Grace Mortensen (1:46.86 – 3 second PR) finished eighth overall and qualified for the Division III championship to be held on 2/19. Juliet Burchfield (1:48.34 – 4 second PR) ran the best race of her season, and young career, finishing 11th overall. Isabelle Mortensen (1:54.75 – 2 second PR) finished 15th in only her second race at this distance.

Boys 600m

Despite having an illness sideline him for most of the preceding week, Ryan Thompson had an amazing race, finishing second with a blazing fast 1:25.35 (2 second PR). This time also puts him second on the all-time list for Marblehead, and he’ll have at least one more shot at the school record at the Division III championships. Xavier Grazado (1:33.18 – 2 second PR) finished 12th.

Boys 1,000m 

Ada Merrigan (3:36.49 – 2 second PR) finished ninth in only her second time racing at this distance, which is quite impressive. Maya Mahoney deserves all the credit in the world for racing as well as she did (3:41.23 – 11th place) after being tripped and sent down hard at the start of the race. The officials called back the race to restart, and Maya was still determined to run despite the fall. Sofia Grubor (3:46.14) finished 13th overall and second in her heat. Right on her heels was Savannah Caruso (3:48.70 – 4 second PR) finishing 15th overall and fourth in her heat, and rounding out the Marblehead runners was Sienna Velandry (3:53.00) in 17th, who matched her PR despite not racing at 100 percent strength.

Boys 1,000m

Gabe Bayramian (2:45.42 – 2 second PR) ran his best race and finished fourth overall. His time qualifies him for the Division III championship where he will look to improve even further. Peter Sullivan (3:05.07 – 8 second PR) finished 15th with his best race of the season and David Alpert (3:16.73) finished 19th to round out the school’s runners.

Girls 300m

Cate Trautman remains undefeated in the 300m this season while seizing the conference title with a top-three time in school history (42.64). Le’Daisha Williams continued her fantastic 300m stretch by finishing fourth overall with a time of 44.33. Sadie Halpern finished sixth overall with a time of 44.79, and Cora Gerson nearly matched her PR with a 10th place finish and a time of 46.05.

Boys 300m

Harrison Curtis, in his fourth 300m race ever, captured the title with a time of 37.30. Sebastian Pantzer finished third overall with a time of 37.70.

Girls 2-Mile

Cat Piper (14:24.56) finished eighth and Anne Simcoe (14:26.04) finished ninth. Angie Fischer was on pace to smash her PR, but unfortunately, the officials miscounted the laps of two Beverly runners and all three competitors stepped off the track with one more lap to go.

Boys 2-Mile

Isaac Gross continued his NEC dominance in the 2-mile, cruising to first in 9:51.51. After going undefeated in league action this season, Isaac is looking forward to his first big test at the Division III championship where he will face strong competition. Jonah Potach (11:41.51) finished 14th overall, and while this wasn’t a personal best, Jonah’s racing keeps improving every time he steps foot on a track.

Girls High Jump

Keira Sweetnam finished third overall with an impressive clearance of 5’2”. Keira has worked on refining her approach and takeoff over the past couple weeks, and her continued success in the midst of changing her form is exceptional. Elise Burchfield finished eighth overall with a clearance
of 4’6” and Ava Machado finished ninth with a clearance of 4’6”.

Boys High Jump

Errol Apostolopoulos was on a mission, finishing fourth overall with a jump of 5’6”. Graham Tips finished 12th overall with a clearance of 5’2”.

Girls Long Jump

Claire Davis soared to a second place finish with a jump of 15’8”, and was followed by Ana Vina de Garnica who placed fourth with a jump of 15’3”. Charlie Roszell finished seventh with a jump of 14’8”, and Elise Burchfield finished eighth with a jump of 14’3.5”.

Boys Long Jump

Alex Hersey led the way for Marblehead with a leap of 19’5” to finish third overall. He was followed by Errol Apostolopoulos with a jump of 18’4” to finish in fifth. Thomas Carlson finished 11th with a jump of 17’2”, Claudio Gusmao Gonzalez finished 12th with a new PR jump of 16’11”, and Elian Colon had a great jump day but narrowly fouled on three jumps.

Girls Shot Put

In an extremely competitive field, Lillian Reddy finished ninth overall with a throw of 29’2”. Lillian concludes the season with her final three meets all beyond the 29’ mark. Rachael Albert finished 16th overall with a throw of 25’11”.

Boys Shot Put

Riley Schmitt finished ninth overall with a throw of 38’11”. Riley injured his shoulder halfway through the season, and for him to rally and throw a near-PR after missing a few weeks of training is a testament to his drive and work ethic.

Girls 4x200m

Cate Trautman, Ava Machado, Devin Whalen, and Claire Davis finished second overall with a time of 1:49.28.

Boys 4x200m

Harrison Curtis, Sebastian Pantzer, Thomas Carlson, and Ryan Thompson finished second with a time of 1:34.64, narrowly missing their PR. With limited recovery time between the 600m and 300m, Ryan, Harrison, and Sebby were gutting it out on tired legs, too. This team, like the girls, have auto-qualified for the All-State Championship.

Girls 4x800m 

The team of Kate Twomey, Juliet Burchfield, Maya Mahoney, and Grace Mortensen, running in that order, finished third with a time of 10:57.49.

Boys 4x800m

Similar to the girls team, most of the Marblehead runners in this relay were doubling. The team of Gabe Bayramian, Nate Assa, Nicolas Regnault, and Will Cruikshank finished fourth with a time of 9:25.45.

Girls 4x400m

Sadie Halpern, Le’Daisha Williams, Keira Sweetnam, and Charlie Roszell finished second overall with a time of 4:23.07, which secured second place for the girls team.

Boys 4x400m

Xavier Grazado, Graydon Waller, Graham Tips, and Jack Burke finished fifth
overall with a time of 3:59.92.